A complete collection, of all the tracts, both printed and manuscript, relating to Mary Tofts, the celebrated Rabbit Woman of Godalming
- Publication date
- Toft, Mary, -- 1703-1763., Obstetrics., Midwifery., Great Britain., McGill University Library Digitized Title, Osler - Room, Toft, Mary, 1703-1763, Obstetrics, Midwifery, Great Britain
- London : [publisher not identified]
- McGill University Library
1 volume : illustrations, portraits ; 22 cm
1 volume : 22 cm
1 volume : 22 cm
- 2019-02-05 18:01:27
With the Roxburghe crest on the covers; bk.-plates of Sir Henry Hope Edwardes and A.M. Broadley. Inserted: autogr. note to Steevens from Chas. Combe (who added "two trifling things" to the collection); and cuttings from sale catalogues etc. A MS. note on the flyleaf reads: "This singularly rare collection was made by Geo. Steevens at whose sale it was purchased [22 May, 1800, lot 1551, for £14.10.0] by the late Duke of Roxburghe, who has added a curious original letter [xxiii] from the Accoucheur, John Howard... detailing the whole circumstances of this notorious case. This volume produced at the Duke of Roxburghe's sale (lot 2001) the sum of £36.15.0 Re-sold, White Knights [library of the 5th Duke of Marlborough, 1819] lot 4149 £12.12.0; Mr. Jolley's, May 1853 (lot 2233) £10.5.0"; and in a later hand: "The Hope-Edwardes sale... lot 537, May 23, 1901, purchased [for £6.5.0] by Messrs. Mags for A.M. Broadley."
I had a number of the pamphlets, but as this set seemed to be of special interest, I sent a bid and got the vol. for £10.10.0 (Broadley sale, Hodgson's, 12 June, 1917, lot 310). Broadley, in no.7077, p.2, speaks of this as a good example of pre-Granger grangerizing. The D.N.B. has a full account of the case and the literature. It is of interest only as one of the most celebrated instances of hysterical deception. [W.O.]
Contents as arranged in the volume: i. Two portraits of Mary Toft, one in Indian ink, ascribed in MS. to Sam. Ireland. ; ii. a Short Narrative of an Extraordinary Delivery of Rabbets, perform'd by Mr. John Howard Surgeon at Guilford. Published by Mr. St. Andrè Surgeon and Anatomist to his Majesty. Lond., 1727. iii. The Anatomist dissected: or The Man-Midwife finely brought to bed. Being an Examination of the Conduct of Mr. St. Andre. Touching the late pretended Rabbit-bearer; as it appears from his own Narrative. By Lemuel Gulliver, Surgeon and Anatomist to the Kings of Lilliput and Blefuscu... The 2nd ed... Westminster, 1727. (Apparently not by Swift. Prefixed is a reproduction of a portrait of St. Andrè.) iv. Remarks on A short Narrative of an Extraordinary Delivery of Rabbets... as publish'd by Mr. St. Andre... With a proper Regard to his intended Recantation. By Thomas Brathwaite, Surgeon. Lond., 1726.; v. An exact Diary of what was observ'd during a Close Attendance upon Mary Toft, the pretended Rabbet-Breeder... Together with An Account of her Confession of the Fraud. By Sir Richard Manningham... The 2nd ed. Lond., 1726. ; vi. An Advertisement occasion'd by some Passages in Sir R. Manningham's Diary lately published. By J. Douglas, M.D. Lond., 1726. vii. Some Observations concerning the Woman of Godlyman in Surrey... Tending to prove her extraordinary Deliveries to be a Cheat and Imposture. By Cyriacus Ahlers, Surgeon to His Majesty. Lond., 1726. ; viii. Much ado about Nothing: or, a Plain Refutation of all that has been written or said concerning the Rabbit-Woman of Goldaming. Being a full and impartial Confession from her own mouth... Lond., 1727.
ix. The several Depositions of Edward Costen, Richard Stedman... and Mary Costen; relating to the Affair of Mary Toft... Lond., 1727. (At the end is printed an 'Advertisement' of St. André's, dated 8 Dec., 1726, concerning these Depositions which had been taken by him that day.) ; x. An Account of the Rabbets, etc. n. pl. or d. With woodcut heading; 2 leaves; an advertisement of the 'Anodyne Necklace' for teething children. xi. à Propos. Mr. St. André's Case and Depositions, as published in the London Gazette of February 23, 1724...Lond., n.d. This has reference, not to Mary Toft, but to a previous affair of St. André's, in which he alleged that an attempt had been made, in Feb. 1724/5, to poison him (see D.N.B>, v.50, p.120). ; xii. The Discovery: or The Squire turn'd Ferret. An Excellent New Ballad...The 2nd ed. Westminster, 1727. [A transcript.] ; xiii. A Shorter and Truer Advertisement by way of Supplement to what was published the 7th. instant. Or Dr. D.. g.. l.. s in an Extasy, at Lacey's Bagnio December the 4th. 1726. Lond., 1727. [Ballad, signed 'Flamingo'. A transcript.] xiv. A Letter from a Male Physician in the Country, to the Author of the Female Physician in London... To which is added, A Short Dissertation upon Generation, whereby every Childbearing Woman may be satisfied, that 'tis as impossible for Women to generate and bring forth Rabbets, as 'tis impossible for Rabbets to bring forthWomen... Lond., 1726. (With a chapterfrom 'The Female Physician', 1724, by John Maubray, whose credulity is here compared with St. André's; cf. tract xvii.
xv. St. A-D-É's Miscarriage, or A Full and True Account of the Rabbit Woman. The 2nd ed. Lond., 1727. [A ballad. Transcript.] ; xvi. A Song on the Rabbit Breeder by **********. Lond., 1727. [A transcript.]
xvii. The Sooterkin dissected. In a letter to John Maubray, M.D. alias Dr. Giovanni. Wherein is clearly prov'd, I. That there never was such an Animal...[etc.]. By a Lover of Truth and Learning. Lond., 1726. (Signed Philalethes. According to a Dutch superstition, the Sooterkin, or Suyger (sucker) was a parasitic, rat-like animal that developed with the child in utero. Maubray in his book (cf. tract xiv) declared that he had seen one born.
xviii. The Opinion of ye Revd Mr William Whiston concerning the Affair of Mary Toft, asserting it to be the Completion of a Prophecy of Esdras. Extracted from the Memoirs of his own Life and Writings. Written by Himself. The 2nd ed. corrected... Lond., 1753. (A transcript; with a note in a different hand, "This Pamphlet is in the handwriting of George Steevens Esq." It is preceded by an engr. portrait of Whiston, and a page of MS> notes referring to (a) tract x, above; (b) Hogarth's and other prints of the affair; and (c) a notice in the Gazeteer, 21 Jan., 1763, of the death of Mary Tofts.
xix. The Rabbit-Man-Midwife. [Verses transcribed from 'A new miscellany', Lond., 1730.] ; xx. the Doctors in Labour, or a New Whim Wham from Guildford... n.pl. or d. (Twelve compartments, cut from a large engraving, each with verses beneath and each mounted separately. Another copy, a single sheet print as issued, and with title, is inserted folded at the end of the volume. ; xxi. De Muliere Cuniculipara. Autore D0. Orrery Burdet, Arm0. [Verses transcribed "from a MS. of Ballard", i.e. Geo. Ballard, the antiquary.]
xxiii. Autograph letter from John Howard, the apothecary who attended Mary Toft, addressed to 'My Lord Duke' and dated 'Guildeforf Nov. 9th 1726'; two leaves, folio, describing the case. "The twelfth Rabbit, I believe I shall take from her about six o'clock, I have eleven of them in Spirits..." A different letter, written the same day, is printed in the 'Narrative' (tract ii), p.5. xxiv. Mr. Petit, a French surgeon sent from Paris to Doctor Meagre to take an exact Account from him of ye Praeternatural Delivery of Rabbets. (Lond.), sold by J. Clark, engraver, n.d. An engraving, folded and mounted, a caricature of St. André. Followed by another copy, unmounted.
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